DALLAS – Europe’s largest low-cost carrier (LCC), Ryanair (FR), has announced its full-year financial results for the year to March 31, 2023, beating market expectations. Despite reporting a Q4 loss of €154m, FR has revealed record profits after tax (PAT) of €1.43bn. This compares to a loss of €355m for the previous year.
The results are the latest confirmation of the re-surge in travel demand which has boosted passenger numbers and helped the LCC’s profits soar. Indeed, FR saw a 74% growth in passengers to 168.6 million for the year. Meanwhile, load factor grew to 93%, compared to 82% for the year to March 2022. It added that it had seen “strong market share gains in Italy, Poland, Ireland, Spain and across Europe.”
However, increased costs have affected its profits like most other airlines. FR’s fuel bull alone is expected to grow by over one billion euros annually. However, the airline said these fuel costs will be offset “by favourable fuel hedges and improved fuel burn as more Gamechangers [Boeing 737-8-200] entered the fleet.”
This year, Ryanair will operate its most extensive summer schedule to date, with over 3,000 flights per day. Five new bases have been established, and 300 new routes have been launched. FR expects to grow passenger numbers by 10%, up to around 185 million passengers this year.
Boeing Delivery Woes
However, uncertainty over the delivery of its Boeing 737-8-200s could leave FR up to ten airframes short for summer 2023. It said, “We hope and expect that Boeing will recover quickly from this recent delay to minimise its impact on our FY24 traffic growth and profitability.”
The airline has recently signed a multi-million dollar agreement to purchase 300 new Boeing 737-10 aircraft (150 firm orders with 150 options), the first of which is due to arrive in early 2027. FR added that it expects “50% of the order will be used to replace older NGs, while the remainder will facilitate disciplined traffic growth to approx. 300m p.a.” over the next ten years.
Featured Image: Ryanair (EI-DHP) Boeing 737-8AS. Photo: Fabrizio Spicuglia/Airways.